Author: anolinde

Nominator: anolinde

2011 Award Category: Drama: Angst - Honorable Mention

Story Type: Story  ✧  Length: Novel

Rating: Mature  ✧  Reason for Rating: Disturbing Imagery/Themes,Sexual Content,Violence

Summary: The youngest niece of King Théoden, Gúthwyn leads an utterly sheltered life… until she is kidnapped and taken to Mordor, where she falls prey to the sadistic games of an army captain. Reeling from his brutal assaults, she tries to find solace in the arms of gentle-hearted Borogor. But when fate takes him away from her, she must learn to face a cruel world alone. Part of the Rohan Pride Chronicles.

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Reviewed by: Adonnen Estenniel  ✧  Score: 10

Two years ago, I stumbled upon anolinde's Rohan Pride Chronicles (then called a Trilogy, with a ponderous Epilogue). Her stories were my first immersion into Tolkien fanfiction, and, to be quite honest, they have heavily influenced my own writing and some of my character interpretations (Lothíriel being the main one, though she does not come into the series for a few more books). To put things simply, Gúthwyn's journey and life have been very influential on me, and anolinde's writing never fails to entertain. Alone, the first book in the rather long-winded series detailing the author's Original Female Character, is very good. Detailing a good portion of her life, the book goes in and out of some of Middle-earth's worst places and reveals a girl (and later, a young woman), of notable strength and determination. The scenes in Mordor are an enlightening portrayal of the life of the slaves Sauron had imported to fight for him, and the Elf in command is, though doubtfully accurate, a terrifying glimpse that is rather reminiscent of the Nazi SS. In a typical good defeats evil story, Gúthwyn manages to best him, though not before suffering considerable damage to her body and mind (the affects of which are still scene in the more current writing by the same author on the same character). Once out of Mordor, the plot becomes an interestingly motivated Tenth Walker, and though I am not a fan of that particular plot device, anolinde manages it quite well, and again, Gúthwyn steals the show, befriending the Company in a way that is not clichéd or ridiculous. And at the end, though the more pressing threat to her life is at its end, Gúthwyn is swept of further along the pre-conceived plot, leaving the reader hungry for a further installment.

Reviewed by: The Lauderdale  ✧  Score: 7

[Alone] is the first in a series about Gúthwyn, OC sister to Eomer and Eowyn. Kidnapped at age 12, she endures mistreatment as a slave in Isengard, which only escalates when Saruman sends her to Mordor. When she finally returns to friendly lands as an agent of Sauron, she is an angry, suspicious woman who cares about nothing but protecting the two children she left in Mordor, in Sauron's dubious care. [Alone] has the hallmarks of a youthful endeavor, with sometimes forced plot contrivances and an often lurid catalog of Gúthwyn's torments, but it is an impressive achievement in light of the author's age when she began it. And it is, ultimately, compelling stuff. The last thing I need during the MEFAs is to go off on a tangent, reading the four other novel-length works in the [Rohan Pride] series, but I may still end up doing that. Mad props on those, by the way. I have long envied anolinde's bottomless capacity to write. I can only wish that I was so prolific.